ST. LOUIS — After a clean top of the 13th from Sam Freeman, Matt Holliday led off the bottom with a single up the middle.
Matt Adams grounded into a would-be double play, but hustled down the line to beat the throw. With one out, Molina hit a broken bat single past Ramirez at third, leaving two on for Tony Cruz.
On a 1-1 pitch, he punched it up the middle, sending Adams around to score for a walk off single.
Cards win 3-2.
Kolten Wong began the bottom of the 12th with a strikeout, and Martinez’s night closed when Xavier Scruggs pinch hit.
He too wold fall on strikes, bringing Carpenter up with two outs. A half swing with two strikes sent a ball dribbling down the line at third, and Ramirez waited to see if it would go foul. It never did, and Carpenter was aboard with an unorthodox single.
It would go to waste, as Jon Jay struck out behind him to end the inning.
Lucroy left on
A Gennett line out began the 12th, but a Lucroy single made it interesting.
Martinez followed the one-out hit by getting Aramis Ramirez to pop up to second, bringing up Ryan Braun.
With two strikes on Braun, he put one in the dirt. Cruz blocked it but it rolled away and Lucroy took second. Braun worked a full count before chasing a breaking ball and striking out.
Lucroy was the 12th runner stranded by the Brewers in the game.
A run undone
Jhonny Peralta led off the bottom of the 11th with a hope-inspiring single, but it turned sour one hitter later.
On a 2-1 pitch, Peralta took of on a steal of second. Tony Cruz swung and connected, sending a liner right at second baseman Gennett. He gloved it, and tossed softly to first for a double platy.
Peter Bourjos grounded to third to end the inning and send it to the 12th.
High wire act from Martinez
An empty Cardinal tenth was followed by a leadoff single for the Brewers in the eleventh.
Ryan Braun singled and moved to second on a Gerardo Parra sac bunt, bringing up Khris Davis in place of Mark Reynolds.
He would ground to short, moving Braun to third with two outs. Logan Schafer punch hit for Hector Gomez next, and Martinez fell behind 2-0. The reliever opted to give Schafer first base on an intentional walk, setting up Rickie Weeks with runners at the corners.
Martinez got him down to two strikes, but threw three of the last four pitches in the at bat for balls, walking him to load the bases.
Carlos Gomez got down 0-2, and Martinez finished him off with a strikeout to leave the bases loaded and the score tied.
Pitching duties would fall to Pat Neshek in the 10th, and the All Star reliever got himself in trouble early.
After walking Lyle Overbay to begin the inning, Neshek got the Brewers to hand him an out. Carlos Gomez attempted to bunt pinch runner Elian Herrera to second, but instead popped it up to the remaining Cardinal catcher Tony Cruz.
Scooter Gennett would rip a single into right, leaving men at the corners with one out and bringing up Lucroy.
A seven-pitch battle would follow, but Neshek won it, striking out the Brewers catcher with a sinker. Aramis Ramirez stepped in, but would also leave the runners stranded when he grounded softly to short.
A near-win ninth
Trevor Rosenthal came on and pitched a clean ninth, getting a strikeout and two weak taps from the bottom of the Milwaukee order.
Yadier Molina got right to work in the bottom half, leading off with a double in the left center gap. It was his first hit of the series and put a Cardinal immediately in scoring position.
Tommy Pham would come on to run for him, leaving the tying run 180 feet away for Peter Bourjos. After two failed attempts to bunt, Bourjos tried a third and tapped it foul, striking out for the first out.
Kolten Wong was intentionally walked next, setting up Randal Grichuk as the pinch hitter. With a 1-2 count, he watch a breaking ball come back down the middle for the second out.
It brought up Matt Carpenter, and the Brewers countered with lefty Will Smith. Carpenter also got down 1-2, and when he check swung on a low pitch, home plate umpire Jim Reynolds called him out to end the inning.
Cards tie it up
The Cardinals converted on their best chance to score all night in the eighth, when Oscar Taveras led off with a single into right.
Kolten Wong missed tying the game by inches when he hit a home run just foul down the right field line, and would eventually scorch a ball back to Lohse.
Peter Bourjos, running for Taveras, would take out Hector Gomez as the Brewers’ short stop tried to turn two. That left Kolten Wong on first for A.J. Pierzynski.
The veteran catcher, grounded sharply to first base, moving Wong to second for Matt Carpenter. The third baseman joined Wong on base with his 90th walk of the season, leaving Jon Jay with a chance to do damage.
He came through, singling into left and scoring Wong from second. Matt Holliday came to the plate with two on and one out to give.
The big righty punched a ball into the dirt over the mound, and tore down the line to first. Gennett came in and gloved it, throwing to first as Holliday dove head first into the bag.
He was called out, but Matheny came out of the dugout immediately to challenge. Matt Carpenter had rounded third and was running home on the play, and would have clearly scored if Holliday was safe.
Upon review, the call was overturned to give Holliday a base hit, but Carpenter was sent back to third to make the bases loaded for Matt Adams. He worked a full count, fouling off a pitch before the sixth toss of the at bat was ball four.
Carpenter trotted home to tie the game and Peralta stepped in with a chance to win it. He would ground to short to close the inning, keeping things knotted at 2-2.
Miller was struck by a Ryan Braun liner in the sixth, with the ball skipping away toward first.
It appeared to hit him on the lower leg, and he would stay in the game to finish a clean inning. He didn’t appear to be seriously hurt, but Mike Matheny pinch hit for him in the bottom half, despite him having just 82 pitches.
The Brewers had forced a couple touch innings, so the manager may have felt the time was right to get him out of the game.
Daniel Descalso flew out to center, and Matt Carpenter struck out for two quick outs. Jon Jay showed life with a rope single into right, picking up the second St. Louis hit.
Matt Holliday worked a 3-1 count behind him, but grounded to short to end the inning.
Brewers get another
Milwaukee threatened again in the fifth, picking up a leadoff single before a bunt made things worse.
With Matt Clark on first, Hector Gomez struck out to set up Lohse for a sacrifice. The Milwaukee starter bunted back to Miller, but he tried throw to second to get the lead man. The throw went high and into center, leaving everyone safe.
Carlos Gomez grounded to short, and though Peralta and Wong were quick, they couldn’t turn two on the play.
With men on first and third, Miller got Gennett to ground sharply to first. Matt Adams went to his right, but the ball popped off his mitt and into the outfield. Clark scored, Gomez went to third, and Miller had men on the corners again.
This time he got a grounder back to the mound and made the play, closing the inning with Milwaukee up 2-0.
Birds use their bats
The Cardinals got their first hit right after Milwaukee, when Matt Adams reached on a ball to left in the bottom of the fourth. Parra came sliding in but couldn’t come up with the ball, giving the Birds their first runner that wasn’t a gift.
Unfortunately, it came with one out. That meant when Jhonny Peralta grounded into a double play the next at bat, the inning was over and the Brewers 1-0 lead still held.
No hitter no more
The dream of a no hitter came to an end with two outs in the fourth, when Jonathan Lucroy ripped a double into the left field corner. It was his 45th as a catcher, which ties the major league single season record.
With the hit column open, more Brewers started joining in. Aramis Ramirez laced a single into center field to score Lucroy, and moved to second base when Ryan Braun slapped a ball past a diving Carpenter.
Miller stopped the faucet with a strikeout of Gerardo Parra, closing the inning and keeping the run total at one.
Signs of life
The Cardinals got their first baserunner in the third, when Kyle Lohse ran a pitch up and in to Kolten Wong.
The ball caught Wong on the shoulder, giving him a free trip to first with one out. Miller laid down the sacrifice bunt to move him into scoring position, bringing up Matt Carpenter with a chance to break the Birds into the run column.
The leadoff man wouldn’t even swing his bat, as he trotted down to first on a five-pitch walk. Jon Jay brought an expectant cheer from Busch when he slapped a liner toward left, but it turned into a disappointed sigh when Aramis Ramirez gloved it to keep the game scoreless.
The Shelby Show
Miller picked up his second strikeout in the third, continuing to stymie the Milwaukee bats. A fly ball to right by Scooter Gennett in the first is the only ball that’s left the infield in three innings, and Miller is averaging 10 pitches per frame.
The third came to a close when Matt Adams went into the stands to snag a foul pop up, sliding into the seats to make the catch.
Shelby Miller handled the first two innings with cold precision, setting down the first six Brewers with ease.
He tossed just 17 pitches to get six outs, continuing his string of economical outings. The Cardinals didn’t have a base runner through two either, though they flew out deep twice.
It appears to be another lightning fast start.